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Bird’s First Day Home

Expecting your new bird home?

So after putting a lot of thought and research to it, you have decided on your Perfect Match. And it’s time to bring your new feathered friend home.

 

Adding a New member to the family can be pretty exciting for us. However, to our pets, moving day is probably one of the most stressful days these animals have to go through. So, as a responsible companion, we should do our best to ease this transitional phase as much as we can to our beloved pets.
And making them feel at home, is a bit different when it comes to birds.

When dealing with cats and dogs, whose ancestors have been new Bird first day home_Petsoholictamed for millions of generations, is one thing. But with birds… It’s a whole different story. And chances of anxiety are even higher if the bird’s adopted or have been mistreated before.

These first few days with your bird are very important in establishing your relationship. And thus, we have to be prepared beforehand.

I. Preparations:

1. Bird Proof your home/ bird’s room:

I can’t stress enough how important it is to bird proof your home or your bird’s room. If you just try to google how much stories and accidents birds owners tell. You would know why this is extremely crucial for your birds safety.

Some plants are toxic to birds, so make sure you do your research and remove any toxic plants.

Make sure all windows are closed. And make sure to close your lovebirds-pettsoholic_Bird's first day homecurtains to avoid crashing accidents. Because birds brains cannot comprehend the concept of “Glass walls” on their own.

Make sure the stove, fans, air conditioners and any machine that could potentially harm your bird is off and far away from the bird’s room.

Don’t use any air fresheners, bugs sprays, perfumes, toxic fumes, or basically anything that could potentially harm our respiratory system as “humans” for even 1% around your birds.
Because, their respiratory systems are extremely sensitive, and many of these things could not just harm them, but may actually kill your birds.

Remove any Electrical wires, sharp objects, mirrors, and any other object that birds could chew on or crash into and harm themselves.

Remove any wooden item you care about. Birds, and more specifically parrots just love to chew things. And their favorite choice is always wood. So remove any wooden or basically any item that you really care for away from your birds, and make sure you place several chewing toys for them instead.

 

2. Preparing the Cage:

Assuming you have already done your research, chose your matching bird, and the proper cage size for him. Now the first thing you need to do is; to prepare the cage your bird is going to be settling in.
Buy the right food, perches, bird stand and toys for your bird’s specific breed, and have them ready inside the cage.

It’s important to; ask the previous owner or the bird’s shop about his diet. Because sudden changes could cause digestive problems and even more stress. However, you can always change up your bird’s diet slowly if you think his current diet is not very healthy for him.

 

 3. Cage Placement:

No matter what type of bird you’re bringing home, there are certain common rules to placing their cages.
Now where should you place the cage?

‣ Ideally, you should place the cage in a room where the family spends most of their time. However, if you have a toddler or another pet, then you should place the cage in a quieter room specially for the first few days until the bird is less anxious and starts to get to know and trust you enough. Then you can move the cage.

‣ Place the cage on a higher ground.
Birds are prey animals. So in the wild they tend to feel safer standing at the highest points of the trees, where no animals could reach them, and they can see everything. The closer they are to the ground, the more stressed and vulnerable they can feel. So place the cage at the highest place you can.

Place the cage against a wall.
At least one side of the cage should be leaning to a wall. This will automatically give the birds a less space to be examining for predators. Which will make them less stressful.

Don’t place the cage in the kitchen. Even though, this is a popular choice to many people. However, birds respiratory system is very sensitive and all the fumes from the stove, cooking and cleaning materials can be very harmful to your birds. Needless to say, the  number of dangerous things that are placed in there like; knives and other sharp objects.

Don’t place the cage in a balcony or outdoors, unless you are sitting there with them. Because again, parrots are  animals, and placing a cage in such places can attract a lot of predators like hawks, eagles, cats and so many others. And the bird being in a cage, cannot defend himself or even fly away, will probably be eaten.

II. Settling in:

It’s important to Remember that, Birds are prey animals. And the way you approach your bird will decide whether he should see you as an enemy, or a flock member.

1. The Ride Home:

As humans, our first instinct to comfort things is to interact and talk to them.

Don’t talk to your bird on the ride home. Warning on Google Android 8.0

After meeting your bird for the first time, place him in his travel cage, get him in your car and drive home.
Don’t talk to him on the ride home, and don’t try to calm him down with your voice, or to tell him how excited you are to take him home.

I know you’re probably gonna wanna talk to your bird, but It’s very important to remember again how much he is traumatized right now.And this will probably be the first time he’s hearing your voice.
So, don’t let their brain link your voice to stressful emotion, and later on, every-time he hear your voice, his brain will give him the same signals it gave him under stress.

You always want to create positive mind links between you and your bird.

Personally, when I bring home a new bird, I like turning on some soft soothing music in a very low volume, close the windows, and drive home.

 

2. Arriving Home:

It’s very important to avoid any enthusiastic, loud voices and sudden movements with or around the bird when he arrives home.

Place him in his new cage, and try not to hold him if possible. Just open the travel cage door in-front of his main cage, and let him fly in on his own.
It’s very important from the first day, to let your bird know that he is not going to be forced into anything.

‣ Don’t try to hold him as soon as you come home, or place your fingers through his cage.
I know how much you will want to hold your bird, and give him lots and lots of kisses… And you will get there, just not yet.

‣ Talk to him in soothing calm voice, sing and read to him. Let him hear and learn your voice and let him see you.
Allow him to get to know you from a distance, and slowly move closer and closer as your relationship evolves.
Respect your bird’s boundaries so you don’t break the circle of trust between you.

‣ Moreover, sometimes a bird will refuse to eat on his/her first day because they’re very nervous. But that’s okay. So don’t panic, Just comfort him, give him some space and let him settle in.

 

Interacting with the bird – The First couple of days:

For the next few day, let him see you going about, talk to him, and talk in-front of him. Yet,  give him some space to see you and your family.

NEVER approach your bird from behind, or take him by surprise. But rather, approach him from the front and don’t look directly into his/her eyes.

At this point, the bird is getting to know you and understand your routines and behaviors, just as you are getting to know his. So open his cage door, and just go about with your life.

Change his food and water regularly while talking to him in  a calm voice and observing his body language.

The Most Important thing in any relationship is trust. Gain your Bird’s trust, and you get a long, happy life with an amazing, and affectionate Companion…

However, depending on your bird’s personality and the bird’s breed, let him go by his own pace, and your relationship with him will evolve one day at a time.

 

Never take it personally

Birds are very smart and moody. And it’s totally normal to have a certain progress with your birds, but then someone makes a mistake, and tomorrow his back to stage 1 in your relationship.
So just give it time, depending on where he came from, how he was treated before and some other genetic details…

Some birds would take a few days to tame, while other may take up to a year or more. Just be patient and give them a lot of your time, and lots and lots of unconditional love. 

 

If you found this article helpful, You May Also like:

Most Popular Parrot Breeds
Budgies Care 101
Cockatiels Care 101
11 Things to consider before choosing your first pet

 

Hope you found that useful.. I’ll See you next time ✌️

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Birds Home

Cockatiels Care 101

Basic Information:

Commonly known as: Cockatiels, Quarians and Weiros.
Scientific name:
Nymphicus hollandicus
Origin: Australia
Average lifespan: 10 – 14 years (Wild), Up to 20 years (In Captivity)
Size: 30 – 33 cm (Adult)


So, What is a Cockatiel?

Known for their bright-colored peachy cheeks, crown feathers, beautiful voice, friendly, and very gentle nature.
These beautiful parrots come in as the second most popular pet birds world-wide, right after “budgies“.

These little cockatoos, seem to attract so many people to their homes.
However, they can be very messy. They need daily care and attention. And it is essential that they get to spend time outside their cage everyday.


Common Characteristics:

CockatielsCockatiels are a great choice for a beginner pet bird owner. Even-though i totally disagree with the term “starter pet”, but they are a great choice for beginners, since they are generally easier to train.

Cockatiels are very social, friendly, gentle and playful birds, specially if they were hand tamed. They have so many colors variations, and they can bond really well with their owners.
Moreover, they love lovee loveeee to chew (as most parrots are). In the wild, parrots most of their day searching for food, so you need to give them lots of foraging toys to keep them mentally stimulated, and give them toys they can shew on, preferably wood toys.

These amazing birds can live up to 20 years. So, if  you’re thinking about getting one, you need to make sure that you are up to such long-term commitment, and that you’ll be able to provide them with their forever home, and give them the best quality of life they deserve.

Shower these bird with love and attention, and you will get will have a bond that lasts for the rest of their lives ?

As a general rule, males tend to be more curious, vocal and easier to tame and train than females, since females instinct is more defensive.

Color Variations:

They have so many colors, but we can categorize them into 11 main color mutations:

1. Grey Tiels,
2. Pearl Tiels,
3. Pied Tiels,
4. Cinnamon Tiels,
5. Lutino Tiels,
6. Fallow Tiels,
7. Dominant Yellow Cheeck Tiels,
8. White Face Tiels,
9. White Face Tiels,
10. Recessive Silver,
11. Pastel Face Tiels.
However, each of these variations have multiple color mutations.

Vocalization:

These parrots have such beautiful voices. They can mimic their owners tunes, and come up with their own.
However, males are the true singers of this specie, while females are more on, since males use their voice as a mating call. And it’s really amazing how much different tones can these birds create.
Although some can learn to mimic a few words. However, they are not very good talkers.


How to choose a Cockatiel?P_Cockatiel

Choosing your Cockatiel is very crucial. And finding a reliable place to get your bird is very important. Nothing is sadder than bringing home a new bird, just to watch him die a few weeks later. And it gets even more complicated if you have other birds.

If you are a beginner – Make sure your get a Cockatiel that is already tamed, and preferably hand-fed.


Here’s your checklist:

1. When you go to get your bird, make sure you go in the early morning, or at the evening right before the sun set. These are the times that birds are mostly vocal and active, so it makes it easier to choose a healthy bird.

2. Look for a young, weaned bird.

3. Make sure the bird is tamed, and observe how the breeder handles the bird. Cockatiels are very smart little cockatoos. If the breeder handles the bird too roughly, and the bird gets too scared. There’s a big chance that bird gets scared for life and it may take too long to get him used to you. This is really important, specially if it’s your first time handling a bird and you’re not very experience with taming them.

4. Check their activity level
Birds are really good at hiding their sickness. So you need to look for those who are active. If a bird seems to be lazy, sitting at the button of the cage most the time, puffed up, has trouble balancing and has ruffled feathers, there’s a chance that the bird is sick.

5. Check to see if the bird’s feathers has any bold spots.

6. Check out their beaks, and feat. Make sure that they don’t have any deformities.

7. Check their eyes – his eyes should be bright and clear.

8. Check thee cage, food and water.
Unhealthy diet, and dirty cages,  increases the potentials of having a sick bird.

9. Finally, once you purchase your bird, take him to the vet to make sure he is in good health.

If you have other birds; don’t introduce the new member to the flock before getting him checked at the vet. If he is carrying any illness, you don’t want the rest of your birds to catch it.


How to care for your Cockatiels?

1. Interaction:

Cockatiels need lots of time and attention from their owner since they’re very social… So you need to make sure you have enough time to spend with them daily.

You must spend at least an hour interacting with your birds every day, and not just being near them.
Your Cockatiel considers you a part of his flock, and sometimes his mate. And In the wild, flock members do everything together. For this reason, if you want to make your tiel a happy one, you should mimic the same behavior, by trying to engage them in everything you do.

Birds are really smart, and they will pick up on your daily routine very fast, and learn to adapt to it. But, If you don’t have enough time to spend with your Cockatiel everyday, then its better if you get your bird friend a companion.

2. Cage size and Bar spacing:

Size:
“The Bigger the Better”

The Standard rule for buying any bird’s cage is that: the cage has to be double the size of the bird with its wings spread.
You can never get a cage that is too big, but you can get one the is too small!

STOP USING ROUND CAGES

Birds hate these cages. You should never get this type of cage for any bird ever. They just don’t give them any sense of security. Hence, increase their stress levels enormously.

Minimum Cockatiels cage size as recommended by professionals is: 24″ (60.96 cm) long by 18″ (45.72 cm) wide by 24″ (60.96 cm) tall for 1 Bird.

However, as mentioned earlier, Cockatiels spend some time outside the cage everyday, to get the necessary exercise and stimulation, to keep them healthy and happy.

Bar Spacing:

Bar spacing is also very important. Because, if you get a cage with bar spacing that is too wide for your bird, there is the risk of the bird sticking his head out between the bars, which may injure the bird or even worse; he may actually choke.
For Cockatiels, Bar spacing should be about: 1/2″ to 5/8″ (1.27 – 1.5875 cm).

3. Perches:Cockatiel Perches

There are so many types of perches on the market that you can choose from. However, you need to make sure that; the perches are comfortable, and that you get them in different sizes and textures.
If all the perches are of the same sizes and textures, it can cause sores and deformities in your bird’s legs.

Next, Make sure you place the perches in a way, to give your bird enough space to jump and possibly fly between them.

4. Toys:

Cockatiels ToysCockatiels LOVE toys that they can CHEW

If you decide to get a Cockatiel or any other parrot really, expect to get lots and lots of destructible toys for your birds. Because they just LOVE to chew.

Make sure you give them lots of mind stimulation with foraging toys.
And don’t bother getting them fancy toys because, we all know how expensive birds toys can be, specially when you need to replace them all the time.
There are so many D.I.Y. (Do it Yourself) toys that are very cheap, safe, and easy to make.

And remember, smart birds like Cockatiels can get bored with their toys very quickly. A good way to outsmart them, is to rotate their toys weekly, and mix them up. That way you could keep your birds interested in the same toys longer.

However, whether you are buying a toy or making one yourself, you need to be very careful and to make sure that the toys are safe for your birds. Check that there’s nothing toxic for your birds in there, and that there’s no small pieces that your bird could swallow or choke on.

5. Cleaning:

Cages must be cleaned regularly.
Place a nice bedding at the bottom of your cage, that you can easily change-up everyday or as needed.
Water bottle and food bowls or hangers, should be cleaned and refilled daily to prevent Bacterial infections.

Birds can be really messy, and they do need a lot of work.


Deep Cleaning the cage:

Deep cleaning the cage is really important, for you and your birds. And you must do it every couple of weeks.
I Personally deep clean my birds cages once a month (or more as needed)…
So, you can do it more or less depending on your birds and how much the cage is messed up.

How to deep clean the cage?

Never use soap – Birds are very sensitive. Soap and other cleaning products leave chemical residues that are toxic and may harm your birds.
To deep clean the cage; you can either use vinegar or lemon juice. Those 2 help in killing bacteria.
Personally, I prefer filling a spray bottle with water, vinegar and 1 lemon to give it a fresh smell;

1. Remove everything from the cage: Food plates, water bottles, perches and toys, and clean them thoroughly, using the same mixture above.

2. Get a new scrub, and deeply clean everything, using the spray bottle you prepared earlier. Or you can simply wash it under the sink with water first, then use a clean scrub or towel while spraying with the vinegar/Lemon juice mix.

3. Leave them to dry, then put everything back in its place

Note: If your birds are nesting, deep clean with a wet towel without touching the nest, or moving the cage.

6. Bathing:

How much should I shower my Cockatiels?

Cockatiels are very powdery birds, and they just Love showering, as it helps them

groom themselves, and get rid of excess powder. Needless to say, if you have any sort of allergies, showering your birds will be good for you too, and you’ll just love enjoy watching them have a blast and enjoy the water.

Ideally, you should shower Cockatiels every 4 days. However, this varies depending on the weather, and your bird’s personal preference. Hence, if it’s really cold, then normally you shouldn’t shower them as much.

Different ways to shower your birds:

Every bird have his or her own character, unique personality and personal preferences… Just as we as “people” do.
So you need to figure out what each of your birds love, and what makes them happy.
Not all birds enjoy showering the same way, so these are 4 different ways you could shower your birds.

1. Using a Spray Bottle:
Most birds love spray bottle baths. Fill a Spray bottle with water, and gently spray your birds.
If you find your Cockatiel rolling around, grooming herself and moving closer to the bottle, this means she’s enjoying it. But, If she flies away, its your sign to stop.

2. The Classic bowl of water bath:
Just fill up one of their larger bowls with water, and watch them enjoy their baths.
But, be careful; don’t leave the water for too long, so they don’t get bacterial infections. And don’t fill it in a deep bowl because accidents may happen, and the bird may drown.

3. Open Faucet: ?
I’ve never personally tried it, but i have seen so many videos on YouTube of bird owners opening the water tap, and the birds just love it. They fly around, pass under the water, jump in and out, and they seem to really enjoy it.
Some even advice showering with your birds, but again while making sure that you don’t use any shampoos or anything with chemicals that could potentially harm them.

4. Rolling in wet greens:
This is really nice specially on hot summer days.
Many birds love rolling around in their wet greens before eating it. It’s so adorable.
Place some wet greens like parsley and cilantro on top of your birds cage or stand. And if they like it, they will roll around in their greens like crazy… They really love it.

So just observe your birds, and that’s how you really get to know them.. The more time you give them, the more you learn and understand what makes each of them happy. And it shows in the simplest things like; Taking a Bath…

7. Sleeping?

Cockatiels need a 10-12 hours of undisturbed sleep everyday. Lack of sleep will affect your bird’s overall health. And they can get really cranky just as a sleepy toddler does.
Ideally, birds should be sleeping by sun set, and waking up with sunrise, just as they do in the wild. However, most the time we want to spend more time with our birds at night. So it’s okay as long as they are getting their 10-12 hours of sleep.

And when it’s sleep time, place your birds in their cage, and place the cage in a quiet, dark room where there’s no TV. sounds or anything that could disturb your birds.
Moreover, it is advisable to cover up your birds cage at night to help them get a good night sleep. But some birds hate covering up their cages, so in this case; don’t freak out your bird. Just place them in a dark, quiet room.


You May Also Like:

Most popular parrot breeds
Budgies Care 101
Cockatiels Care 101

Hope you found that useful.. I’ll See you next time ✌️

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Birds Home

Most Popular Parrots Breeds

“Parrots are NOT pets. They are life-time Companions”

 

One of the most popular pets, yet they’re the most misunderstood.

Parrots are very intelligent, and sensitive creatures. They need so much care, interaction and stimulation to keep them healthy and happy.
And it’s no secret, how messy one small bird could be.

Before you decide if birds are the right choice for you, you must first learn if you are the right companion for a bird, and which people parrots love Best.”

However, between all the varieties of feather colors, sizes, abilities and amazing personalities, sometimes It’s really hard to choose your favorite pick.

 

 

 

So here’s a list of some of the most Popular parrots:

1. Budgerigars:

Commonly known as: Budgies and shell Parakeets
Average lifespan: 6 – 10 years
Origin: Australia
Size: 6 to 8 inches
Common Characteristics: Very Social, flock birds, love attention.
Budgies Care 101

 

 

2. Cockatiels

Cockatiels

Commonly known as: Cockatiels, Quarians,Weiro and Cocktails
Average lifespan: 10 – 14 years (In the Wild), Up to 20 years (In Captivity)
Origin: Australia
Size: 11 – 12 inches (Adult)
Common Characteristics: Small little cockatoos, Social, love mimicking sounds, Beautiful vocalizations.

 

 

3. Conures:

Average lifespan: 12 – 30 years
Origin: South and Central America and Mexico
Size: Medium sized parrots (size varies depending on the species)
Common Characteristics: Funny, easily trained, Nippiness and biting are probably the most common behavioral complaint.
 
Did you Know! There are over a 100 species of Conures in the Wild, but only 4 species are domesticated.

 

 

4. Fischer’s Lovebirds: 

Commonly known as: Fischers, lovebirds.
Average lifespan: 10 – 20 years.
Origin: Central Africa
Size: 6 inches
Common Characteristics: Social, Curious and Loud. Females tend to be nippy during breeding seasons.

 

 

5. Caiques:

Average lifespan: 20 Years, but can live up to 40 years
Origin:  Amazon Forest, south of the Amazon River in Bolivia, Brazil, and Peru.
Size: 9 to 10 inches (size varies depending on the species)
Common Characteristics: Known to be “The Clowns” of the parrots; playful, comical little birds. Social, but they can be aggressive to other bird species.
 

 

 

6. Monk Parakeets:

 

 

 


Commonly known as:
Quaker parrots
Average lifespan: 15 – 20 years
Origin: Argentina and the surrounding countries in South America.
Size: 29 cm (11 inches)
Common Characteristics: Social, Outstanding mimicking ability, noisy birds.

 

 

7. African Greys:

Commonly known as: Greys, Casco.
Average lifespan: 30 – 50 years
Origin: Africa
Size: 12 to 13 inches
Common Characteristics: Extremely intelligent birds, loyal, with amazing talking ability. However, they are nervous, shy birds, but can be socialized if they are properly trained. Tend to be a one-person bird, not good with children. Requires lots of time and attention. Wild ones are almost impossible to tame.

 

 

 
 

8. Poicephalus (Senegal Parrot):

Average lifespan: 25 – 30 years
Origin: West Africa
Size:  23 cm (9.1 inches)
Common Characteristics: Cuddly and affectionate, very friendly, vocal, poor talking ability, tend to be a one-person bird. Wild ones are almost impossible to tame.

 

 

 

9. Cockatoos:

There are about; 21 different species of Cockatoos.
Average lifespan:
 20 – 80 years (Varies depending on the species)
Origin: Australasia, Indonesia and the Philippines.
Size: Medium to Large (depending on the species)
Common Characteristics: Very social, cuddly and affectionate, Intelligent, and playful birds. Seeks attention, requires lots of time and attention.

 

 

 

10. Amazon Parrots:

Average lifespan: 50 – 70+
Origin: New World (ranging from South America to Mexico and the Caribbean).
Size: 36 cm (14 inches).
Common Characteristics: Outstanding vocal abilities, noisy, playful, curious and funny birds. loyal and loving companions. But can be a bit moody. Requires lots of time and attention. Tend to be aggressive, if not well-trained.

 

 

 

11. Macaws:

There are about; 18 different species of Macaws
Average lifespan: 50 – 100+
Origin: tropical North and South America
Size: 100 cm (The Largest of all parrots)
Common Characteristics: These are the largest, most spectacular parrots in the world. Very large, loud, playful, loyal and very intelligent birds. Powerful beaks, Screamers, very loud birds. Requires lots of time and attention. Hard to train and care for. Not the right choice for everyone.
 
 
 
 
 
 
You May Also Like:

Budgies Care 101
Cockatiels Care 101

Hope you found that useful.. I’ll See you next time ✌️

 
 

All Information in this article are collected via reliable online sources

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